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Dial Comes To Town

something has gone horribly wrong 8-p
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This movie is part of the collection: Prelinger Archives

Keywords: need meta

Creative Commons license: Public Domain

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Average Rating: 4.25 out of 5 stars4.25 out of 5 stars4.25 out of 5 stars4.25 out of 5 stars4.25 out of 5 stars

Reviewer: JayKay49 - 3.00 out of 5 stars3.00 out of 5 stars3.00 out of 5 stars - December 8, 2014
Subject: Dial? Comes To Town
I began viewing this thinking it was about a town full of stinky people who needed to be introduced to soap and water. Boy was I surprised. It's OK though.
Reviewer: JSBejma - 5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars - December 23, 2011
Subject: Must Be A Small Town
I don't know what year this was made but in cities I never heard of them giving this big old inservice on how to dial a number - despite many immigrants who didn't talk english (like my grandmother and many of her friends).

Our city had two letters and 4 numbers...increased to 5 numbers shortly after the war. In those days of "rotisserie phones" I liked listening to somebody dialing a number and by estimating how long it took for the dial to return I'd guess who was getting called. Our neighbor's WAlnut 9-0012 was very distinctive (took forever to dial).

The Bell System had its hands full in those days but apparently didnt neglect the PR thing.

Great movie. a real treasure. As usual, sure beats today's cable TV!
Reviewer: Dodsworth the Cat - - July 19, 2009
Subject: J is For...
Gramps is asking the operator for a number then ends with 'J'. At one time, that meant you were on a party line.

Gramps doesn't make a lot of sense. When he grew up (considering the age of this film), he likely wouldn't have had a phone to begin with. If he accepted getting a phone as a young adult, I can't see why he'd be less so about getting a phone as an old one.
Reviewer: ma46323 - 5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars - August 16, 2007
Subject: Great Video
In response to previous post. Actually, I don't think the video is a simplified version. I think it's accurate when it comes to small town America. In small towns where there was only one exchange, the telephone numbers were actually only four digits long. There were no letters on the phones. The only places that had seven digit phone numbers were cities and larger towns with more than one exchange. Thus, in Kansas City you might have OLympic 2 + four digits. But in Holt, Missouri you just had the four digits.
Reviewer: ERD - 3.00 out of 5 stars3.00 out of 5 stars3.00 out of 5 stars - February 3, 2006
Subject: Simplified version how to use a dial phone
Must dial phones also had letters besides the numbers for exchanges such as ULster,GEdney, etc.
Maybe the film company felt this would be too complicated for the dialers to understand! Of course, the dial system is now almost antiquated.
Reviewer: Christine Hennig - 5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars - February 2, 2006
Subject: Dialing for Dummies
If youÂre watching ephemeral films in order to laugh at dorky innocent people from the past, then this is your film. Gramps is all up in arms because thereÂs talk that theyÂre gonna install them there phones with dials on Âem! Fortunately, the rest of the family is a little more on the early adapter side, so they take him to a long meeting about dial phones, where they explain way more than you want to know about how they installed them. Then you get to the meat of the film, where a pretty lady laboriously shows us how to make a call on a dial phone, using enough repetition that even the lower-1Q folks like Gramps get it. She uses a huge telephone dial as a visual aid, which definitely has my name on it for the Film Ephemera Museum of Quirky Devices (I called it first!). This is a highly entertaining film, with a great opening featuring a stop-motion animated dial that installs itself on a telephone. This is definitely one to have in your collection.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: *****. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: *****.
Reviewer: Marysz - 5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars5.00 out of 5 stars - November 6, 2004
Subject: Multi-Generation Hell
Crotchety grandpa complains when the phone company changes the phones to ÃÂthem kind with dials on them.ÃÂ Grandpa lives with his son CharlieÃÂs family, who are to be commended for putting up with such a demanding old man. Grandpa even didnÃÂt like it when CharlieÃÂs wife got a new washing machine! Living with Grandpa canÃÂt be easy for this family. And whereÃÂs Grandma? Living with Grandpa probably sent her to an early grave.

The family goes to a meeting to learn how to use the new dial phones, which have irritatingly loud dial tones. As the man from the phone company says, ÃÂitÃÂs mighty important and mighty exciting!ÃÂ As the other reviewers here have noted, this telephone company film presumes that their customers are real dimwits. In the end, Grandpa uses the dial phone to call his friend Ed. Charlie and his family are relievedÃÂlet Grandpa complain to someone else for a change.
Reviewer: dynayellow - 4.00 out of 5 stars4.00 out of 5 stars4.00 out of 5 stars4.00 out of 5 stars - September 9, 2003
Subject: Gol-darned new-fangled technology
I highly recommend watching this film, if only for the definitive "old people hate new things" performance by the grandfather, who can't understand why we need to replace our old phones.

Strangely, the film presents no reason why the new dial phones are better. In the opening bit, Gramps complains of the poor reception when people are listening in, and I thought we would learn that the new electronically connected phones would solve this. Nothing doing. You'll still have crummy reception if the busybodies don't get off the line.

In the end, even Gramps learns how to use the phone, but what choice did he have? You'll use these new phones and like it, old man!

Weird to see a world where people only had 4 digit phone numbers, and the directory was thinner than a TV Guide.
Reviewer: Spuzz - 4.00 out of 5 stars4.00 out of 5 stars4.00 out of 5 stars4.00 out of 5 stars - September 6, 2003
Subject: "It sounds like THIS you MORON!"
Similar to 'How To Use The Dial Phone' but made for stupider people, this film details a town's acceptance of the newfangled device.
Gramps reads all about the dial phones in the paper. He exclaims something (I think it's a swear word) then phones his friend (who's in dire need of acting lessons) to tell him about it. Dad then tells Gramps they're going to a meeting to have people tell all about it. At the meeting, the two gentlemen talkers are fine, but 'Miss White' wins the award for speaking down to the morons with her speech by repeating everything twice, reminding us like 5 times what the dial 'tone' (read buzz) sounds like and while ennthusiastically fondling an oversize dial pad, so you know, those stupid country people would GET IT. Very condensending and strange, this film is reccomended!

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